Get ready to pedal@lincolnfingroup | @eaglesautism | #FlyEaglesFly pic.twitter.com/lB1gauLdzu
— Philadelphia Eagles (@Eagles) May 20, 2023
Last Saturday the Eagles held their annual Eagles Autism Challenge, a fundraiser that includes a charity bike ride. A bunch of Eagles players participated in the ride, and they were easy to spot because they wore winged bike helmets similar to the ones the team wears on the field.
I’m a daily cyclist myself, so that got me thinking: Why doesn’t the NFL sell licensed bike helmets? It seems like a natural, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen them for sale, nor have I seen other cyclists wearing them.
Some quick googling led me to this site, whose helmets look like this:
As you can see, several of those helmet designs are out of date (and the Rams are still listed as being in St. Louis!). As it turns out, the site appears to be abandoned/defunct/etc. But at least these products give us a sense of what NFL bike helmets could look like.
If you look on eBay, you’ll find a few youth bike helmets that appear to be officially licensed:
These all appear to have been made by a Pennsylvania company called Hogies, which as far as I can tell is no longer in business. They’re nice enough, although there’s a certain rinky-dink gumball aspect to them, maybe because the logo decals seem a bit small.
So it doesn’t seem like there’s anything currently in production, especially for adults. With more and more cities adding bike lanes and becoming increasingly bike-friendly, this seems like a good opportunity for someone with a bit of entrepreneurial ambition.
(My thanks to @kodywiddak for bringing the Eagles charity ride to my attention.)
Why stop at bike helmets? Ski helmets are another opportunity. It’d be nice to break of the monotony of everybody wearing black helmets.
I have customized my ski helmet and hockey/broomball helmet, but I’m a Penn State alumnus so it’s not very hard.
Some of the newer NFL helmets look like motorcycle helmets, there’s probably a market there.
I’ll never find it now, but somewhere, I have a Redskins program from ‘74 ish, and one of the photos in it showed fans at a game wearing maroon motorcycle helmets with the team helmet logo, stripes just like the helmets. I assume the guys simply rode to the game and just kept the helmets on. I always thought that was really cool.
After years of being the only guy on the mountain not wearing a helmet, I finally caved this year and bought a ski helmet. As a New Englander, I thought about customizing it to look like a Patriots helmet, but didn’t because the logo would be covered up by the strap from my goggles. I looked at some helmets with attached/flip up goggles, but the goggles I already had have magnetic detachable lenses that you can swap out for different lighting conditions, and I had spent so much money on all the different lenses that I couldn’t give them up. Instead, I’m just another guy in a plain black helmet.
“These all appear to have been made by a Pennsylvania called Hogies”
maybe it should be “Pennsylvania company called Hogies”
In the abstract, I would assume there’s no NFL bike helmet merchandise because most bike helmets are highly ventilated and thus don’t offer enough flat surface for NFL helmet graphics. But that Eagles helmet works nicely, and it’s a pretty normal-looking bike helmet. So it can work! I live in a huge biking city, and I can guarantee that if either Packers or Badgers bike helmets that faithfully reproduced the look of an on-field team helmet were available, about 50% of all local bikers would buy one.
Alternately, there are mountain bike and scooter-style helmets, and while they’re a bit unventilated for my taste, some road bikers do wear them, and they’re much closer to the shape and solidity of a gridiron shell. For example, Nutcase makes versions of this style for adults and kids: link
My thought also, but given how much the designs of actual NFL helmets have changed in recent years, and they’ve managed to adjust the helmet graphics to fit those, I would assume you could have a bike helmet that would allow NFL graphics to scale to it.
I assume that was a dark green Eagles helmet in the photo, but as lamented many times on here, it looks so close to black in various lightings it is hard to be certain. If I wasn’t a football fan and didn’t know that was suppose to be dark green I would have thought it was matte black.
I can’t think of any NFL product where safety is part of the package. No one would sue the NFL over a defective sweatshirt or bobblehead, but if they got hurt wearing a helmet with NFL-approved designs, you can be sure they would include the NFL in their lawsuit.
Stole my thoughts, Ron. Was wondering when the NFL actually started caring about cranial health of anyone who played or follows the league.
My daughter’s Little League coach rode in that!
I’d love it if there were actually NFL licensed bike helmets for adults. I’d totally wear it for mountain biking, and as a joke to games.
The Snack Helmets site is so out of date, if you click on to buy something it takes you to a listing on Amazon for a replica Riddell mini-helmet, or an Amazon 404 page. Of course, the bottom of their site has a copyright date of 2016, but those bike helmet designs are from no later than 2006.
As a cyclist, I have longed for padded biking shorts that look like the Browns orange pants. Maybe a matching jersey? I never really thought about the helmet, but it seems like an entire football uniform could translate well into a cycling kit.
Curious as to why you see many cyclists wearing what would best be called a uniform (or kit) when they are out for recreational rides, and not just in an actual race / event?
Do cyclists just not invest in what you’d call practice gear? Do they just have so many uniforms that they wear them during non competitive rides also?
Always puzzled me why I’d see lone cyclists getting their miles in, but wearing full uniforms.
Cycling jerseys (usually) have 3 pockets on the back which can hold snacks, spare tire tube, phone, etc. Shorts have padding sewn in for comfort. Most cyclists that wear full kits will still ride dozens of miles on a recreational/training ride, so a full kit is worn for practicality.
I wonder if the Steelers bike helmet had no logo on the left side.
Thanks, I know of the specialized nature of cycling gear. So it is just a matter of why bother investing in specialized gear for non-competitive rides when you can just wear the race gear you already have. Makes sense. Wasn’t sure if it was something like cyclist culture included strong loyalty/pride towards their clubs and liked representing them even during practice rides.
Response to Greg:
A lot of the cyclists I know can’t go out on a ride without letting everyone know that they are an elite cyclist. Ain’t no such thing as practice gear. That’s like showing up to a pickup softball game
Jeremy’s answer is correct about pockets, tech fabric, etc. But there’s no logical reason you can’t wear a fun jersey on a training ride, other than to show off. My favourite jerseys are from beers and bands, but I’m also way too old to try care about impressing anyone with my elite racing resume.
Its a weird elitist sport sometimes.
Paul – I don’t know if you have already mentioned this but Meijer is the new ad patch sponsor for the Detroit Tiger.
Those biking buckets remind me of Dale Jarrett’s racing helmets when he used to drive for Joe Gibbs’ NASCAR CUP team:
Those bike helmets would have looked better in throwback style!
Somebody with the NFL just read this column and had the bright idea to license bike helmets.
Are bike helmets safe or do they just make drivers more careless?